Are you trying to decide what you want to do for a living or looking to switch career paths? Here are seven occupations with a growing number of opportunities.
1. Software developer. Design, code and manage software programs, websites, and mobile applications that look great and are easy to use.
2. Financial adviser. Provide clients with advice and support that helps them manage their assets, set financial goals, and reduce debt.
3. Truck driver. Ensure the safe transportation and timely delivery of goods to and from warehouses, vendors, businesses, and homes.
4. Registered nurse. Administer medication, monitor vital signs, and provide other types of care for patients at a hospital or in their home.
5. Welder. Use specialized tools to create and maintain metal structures in industries such as construction, aerospace, manufacturing, and mining.
6. Information security analyst. Install, test, and maintain software and other digital security systems to protect an organization’s computer networks.
7. Administrative assistant. Answer calls, input data and perform a variety of other clerical tasks in departments such as human resources or accounting.
To find out about specific career opportunities in your area, consult a local recruitment agency.
Remote work has dramatic implications
Apple spent $5 billion on its spaceship campus in Cupertino, but it sat mostly empty in 2020 while work continued from employee homes.
Business forecasters say remote work is here to stay, and the consequences of this realignment will shake up cities, real estate prices, and life choices.
Although considered a slow-moving trend of the future, remote work accelerated during the 2020 pandemic. According to McKinsey Global Institute, about 20 percent of the global workforce could work remotely and still remain effective in their jobs.
According to a survey of 1,000 CEOs by FirstbaseHQ, companies are planning a 40 percent to 60 percent cut in office space, with about 30 percent going entirely remote.
The impact of this realignment from commercial office space to home-based work has wide-ranging consequences — not just for employees, but for the makeup of cities, companies, and neighborhoods across the country.
For companies, economics is easy. It costs companies about $20,000 per employee per year to have them work in office space, while remote work costs about $2,000 per employee.
Companies have yet to assess the impact of remote work on company culture, performance, and effectiveness, according to FirstbaseHQ. In addition, some employees may prefer to work in an office, especially after the isolated months in lockdown.
For cities, the trend is clear, for now at least. Commercial leases are down, empty office space is abundant and sales of city housing like condominiums are way down, while sales of suburban housing are up. What happens to the cities may depend on tax structures changing and amenities reopening, experts say. Meanwhile, remote workers are taking their families out of oppressively expensive city apartments to buy homes in middle American communities with lower taxes and simpler lifestyles.
For Apple, Microsoft, and Uber, who spent big on workspace with elaborate benefits from food to child care and game spaces, offices may remain a big draw, according to CNET.
How to describe your ideal boss in a job interview
As part of the interview process, you might be asked to describe your ideal boss. While it’s useful to know whether a prospective employer’s management style suits your preferences, this can be a delicate question to answer. Among other things, you don’t want to come across as being a needy employee or having problems with authority.
While it’s important to give an honest answer, playing it safe by listing vague, positive attributes such as “fair” and “respectful” don’t provide the recruiter with much information about who you are or what you expect from your employer. After all, who would want a disrespectful manager who doesn’t treat employees fairly?
Therefore, it’s best to provide a precise description that highlights both your ability to work independently and follow directions. Plus, by avoiding obvious answers, you’ll show that you’ve taken some time to reflect on the subject. For example, you could mention that you value managers who clearly communicate expectations but also encourage independent work.
Additionally, you can support your description with a few concrete examples from previous jobs to highlight your ability to adapt to various leadership styles. Just make sure to focus on what you look for in a boss rather than the qualities you dislike. Lastly, remember to never criticize a prior supervisor as this will likely reflect poorly on you.
How to say no
An old adage says that the most successful people aren’t those who say yes most often, but those who say no.
It makes sense: “No” is a means of prioritizing one’s time (or even money), deciding where it’s best spent and with whom. Yet “no” can be really difficult in a culture that seems to value those who add to their plates instead of lightening them.
And while some people will advise you that “No is a complete sentence” — meaning, we don’t always need a grand excuse, explanation, or disclaimers — it’s still a good idea to be polite. So how can we get in the habit of politely declining requests that come our way?
Here are some tips:
* Keep it clear and concise. You want to avoid being hounded, and the people asking likely want to avoid being the hounder.
* Avoid the silent treatment. Have you ever wished someone would have just said no rather than avoiding you? Yeah, that stinks. Don’t be that person.
* Offer an alternative. In business, this can mean a referral elsewhere. At work, it can be a suggestion for how to get something done another way. In your personal life, perhaps another day or location is better.
* Set ground rules for yourself in advance. It’s easier to say no when you’ve established boundaries for yourself and don’t have to take each decision on a case-by-case basis. For example, you might decide that you always work out first thing in the morning — so your calendar is already blocked off, and you’ve mentally committed yourself to something.
* Say thank you. This isn’t a must, but it’s often appreciated. A thank you for the offer, the opportunity, for thinking of you, etc. — followed by a polite decline.
5 tips for cold calling your way to a new job
While it might seem like most professional communication happens online these days, making phone calls is still an effective way to look for a job. In fact, doing so allows you to reach out directly to prospective employers and be proactive about pitching your skills and scheduling a meeting.
However, in order to make a good impression, you need to be prepared. Here are some tips to keep in mind:
1. Research the company before you call. Among other things, you should try to find the name of a supervisor in the department where you want to work.
2. If you’re told that the person isn’t available at the moment, ask when would be the best time to reach them rather than leave a message.
3. Prepare a clear and concise statement to introduce yourself and explain the purpose of your call. Ideally, you should rehearse your pitch a few times beforehand.
4. Be kind and respectful to the receptionist who answers your call. Remember to smile when you speak, as this will come across in the tone of your voice.
5. Take notes during the call so that you don’t forget important information. Confirm that you have the right spelling for an email or the correct time and date for a meeting.
Finally, be sure to end the call by thanking the person for their time. You should also send a follow-up email to reaffirm your interest and provide a copy of your CV or portfolio.
Women in construction: building a better future in the industry
An increasing number of women are working in traditionally male-dominated fields. In construction, however, women still only account for about 10 percent of the industry’s total workforce in the United States.
Construction remains one of the country’s most male-dominated professions. As in many industries, issues such as gender bias, sexual harassment and a lack of proper resources persist and play a role in the underrepresentation of women. For example, most protective equipment worn by construction workers is designed for men, which puts women more at risk for work-related injuries.
Fortunately, numerous organizations exist to facilitate the integration and success of women in the industry through bursaries, mentorship programs, networking events, professional workshops, advocacy, and more. These groups include the National Association of Women in Construction (nawic.org), Professional Women in Construction (pwcusa.org), and Women Construction Owners & Executives USA (wcoeusa.org).
Visit their websites to find out how you can pursue a rewarding career in construction, or contact a local recruitment agency to learn about opportunities in your area.
Do you have what it takes to be a powerline technician?
Are you looking for a rewarding career that allows you to work outdoors and develop specialized skills in the electric power industry? If you’re physically fit and have good hearing and vision, manual dexterity, and problem-solving skills, you may be well suited to the role of power line technician.
While power line technician apprenticeship programs vary across the country, they generally take about four years to complete. Through a combination of in-class instruction and on-the-job training, you’ll develop the knowledge and skills to construct, maintain and repair overhead and underground electrical power transmission and distribution systems. Among other things, you’ll learn how to:
• Erect and maintain steel, wood, or concrete poles, towers, and guy lines
• Install, maintain and repair overhead and underground power lines and cables
• Work with various types of heavy equipment (boom lifts, backhoes, etc.)
• Splice, solder, and insulate conductors and related wiring
• Test and troubleshoot electrical circuits, components, and systems
• Install, maintain and remove transformers and other hardware
Alternatively, many technical colleges offer pre-apprentice power line technician programs that provide students with the fundamentals they need to begin working in the industry. These programs generally last 10 to 20 weeks.
Keep in mind that a career as a power line technician is physically demanding. You need to be comfortable with heights and willing to be on the job during unconventional hours. Fortunately, this type of work is in high demand and, with the right training, you’ll be able to find employment with utility companies, equipment suppliers, engineering firms, and more.